Foreign visitors to Athens prefer so-called homesharing accommodation such as that offered on the Airbnb and Homeaway websites, while the number of beds in apartments available for short-term leasing is now higher that that at the capital’s hotels, statistics show.
According to a survey on Attica hotel traffic in the January-August period conducted by GBR Consulting for the Association of Athens-Attica and Argosaronic Hoteliers, the year’s first eight months saw an increase of 2.2 percent in hotel occupancy rates and an 8.5 percent rise in the average room price.
The data were presented on Thursday at the association’s annual general meeting by the president of the Hellenic Chamber of Hotels, Alexandros Vassilikos.
Athens’s popularity as a holiday destination is growing while the fact that the city is of great archaeological and cultural interest remains its strongest point, the survey showed. However, despite the major increase in air arrivals this summer, occupancy rates rose only marginally for most hotels in the capital. “It is clear that either homesharing or illegal hotels absorb a major number of visitors,” argued Vassilikos. “Data on those rooms have not been formally recorded,” he added, speaking again of unfair competition and lost tax revenues.